Florence death toll rises to 32 as floodwaters linger in North Carolina

James Marshall
September 23, 2018

U.S. President Donald Trump warned SC on Wednesday "water is coming your way" in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, as the death toll from the massive storm rose to at least 36 after two women were swept away in a sheriff's van.

"Florence has been a nasty one", Trump continued. "You take care of yourself". Wilmington is still mostly marooned, surrounded by floodwaters which could rise again, and people there are waiting for hours for necessities like food.

Jordan's family moved to Wilmington when he was a child, and he went to Laney High School before attending the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill.

Florence is now a post-tropical cyclone, which the National Weather Service is describing as an "increasingly elongated low pressure area", which continues to dump heavy rain over the Mid-Atlantic and southern New England, where flash flood warnings are in effect in some places.

Experts say the storm dumped more than 30 trillion liters of rain on North Carolina.

Wilmington is still virtually cut off from the rest of the state, but officials say they'll open routes as soon as flooding recedes and downed trees and powerlines are cleared away.

The president is angry at what he sees as Democrats inflating the death toll in last year's hurricane in Puerto Rico to make him look bad.

The latest victims were two women in SC who drowned on Tuesday when a sheriff's department van in which they were riding was swept away by floodwaters.

The North Carolina Pork Council said one hog lagoon - which houses waste from the animals - breached in Duplin County. FIMAN estimated the damage from flooding in the Lumber River in Lumberton is nearly $35 million.

County officials said workers will begin handing out the supplies to stranded residents in the city of 120,000 people on Tuesday morning. A woman blew a whistle each time drivers had to pull forward. Others got a case of bottled water or military ready-to-eat meals.

Authorities say two female inmates being transported to a mental health facility in SC drowned in rising flood waters after the van they were in was swept away. Cooper said more counties are likely to be added in coming days. City officials warned that still-rising water threatened some neighborhoods and businesses that seemed safe, but said the worst was almost over and life was beginning to return to normal downtown.

Fayetteville Mayor Mitch Colvin said it was unclear if the bridge was threatened.

"There's too much going on", he said.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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